Gelof posts multihomer game for Aviators

September 27th, 2022

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Gelof displays pop for Las Vegas (Sept. 26)
Zack Gelof has been on a power tear as of late.

The No. 4 A’s prospect (MLB's No. 95 overall), who has mashed five homers in the past week, sent two over the wall in Triple-A Las Vegas' 8-3 win over Sacramento.

The 22-year-old crushed a solo blast to right-center field in the second inning, then hit another solo shot in his next at-bat in the fourth.

Gelof's two taters brought his homer tally to 18 and improved his slash line to .268/.353/.463 on the season between Double-A and Triple-A.

He was not the only member of the Aviators to have a multihomer game as Kevin Smith also skied a pair. The Blue Jays’ fourth-round pick in the 2017 MLB Draft, who has parked 10 long balls in a powerful September, went 3-for-5 with three RBIs.

The 26-year-old hit a solo blast to center in the first and a two-run shot to left in the fifth. Smith brought his Minor League long ball tally to 12 (he also hit two for Oakland) and improved his slash line to .265/.325/.437 on the season.-- Edwin Perez

Soderstrom picks up three hits for Las Vegas (Sept. 24)
With Triple-A Las Vegas eliminated from Pacific Coast League playoff contention, Tyler Soderstrom is refusing to simply play out the string.

The No. 2 A's prospect continued a strong first week with the Aviators by recording his first multihit game with the team. Soderstrom went 3-4 with an RBI in Las Vegas' 10-3 loss to Reno.

Power is Soderstrom's game, having hit 29 home runs between three levels this season, but he didn't need the long ball to flex his strength against the Aces. All three of the 20-year-old backstop's hits were singles, but they each carried impressive exit velocities -- 104, 105 and 104 mph again.

Soderstrom has hit .300 with a pair of extra-base hits through his first five games with Las Vegas. Earlier this year, he hit .260 with 20 home runs for High-A Lansing and .278 with eight home runs at Double-A Midland. -- Jacob Resnick

Soderstrom crushes first Triple-A homer (Sept. 22)
New level, same power for Tyler Soderstrom.

The No. 2 A’s prospect got called up and played his first Triple-A game on Tuesday, where he logged his first hit at the new level. Soderstorm logged a different first in his third game, crushing his first Triple-A homer as he went 1-for-4 with one run in Triple-A Las Vegas’ 6-2 win over Reno. 

The 20-year-old has had no shortage of power this season, hitting 28 homers between High-A and Double-A. Soderstrom brought that power to the Aviators, crushing a solo-shot to right field in the fifth inning.

The catcher’s display of power improved his slash line to .265/.323/.510 between High-A, Double-A and Triple-A. -- Edwin Perez

Smith notches cycle in career night at Triple-A (Sept. 17)
Kevin Smith wanted the third home run, something he had never done in a game as a pro. But leading off the bottom of the ninth with his team trailing by two, he knew the right play was to just put the ball in play. As it turned out, that approach placed him in the Triple-A Las Vegas history books anyway.

The 26-year-old poked a 1-2 pitch from Nick Ramirez through the shifted infield into center field for a single, completing the ninth cycle in Aviators history. Smith finished a perfect 5-for-5 with five runs scored, three RBIs and the pair of long balls in Las Vegas’ 12-11 loss to Tacoma.

“You want those games to last as long as they can,” Smith said. “You just hope you can get some good pitches and put good swings on the ball. The guys were battling all game, obviously I wish we pulled it out, but overall the guys were excited.” Full story »

Soderstrom drills 28th homer in doubleheader (Sept. 17)
Doubleheaders haven't posed much difficulty to Tyler Soderstrom. If anything, they present more opportunities to do what he does best: mash baseballs.

In the first game of Double-A Midland's twinbill against Wichita, the No. 2 Athletics prospect picked up his fourth multihit effort in the span of 11 days, three of which came on doubleheader days. In the nightcap, Soderstrom homered for the second time under those circumstances.

The blast was his 28th of the season and 20th for the RockHounds. Entering the final day of the regular season, Soderstrom was hitting .333 with a 1.073 OPS in 13 September games, despite five of them being part of doubleheaders. Baseball's No. 50 overall prospect leads his organization in home runs and RBIs (99). -- Jacob Resnick

Gelof, Soderstrom homer at Double-A (Sept. 11)
It took a village for Double-A Midland to pull out a 7-6 win over Corpus Christi.

Zack Gelof, Oakland's No. 4 prospect, began the scoring with a solo shot to center in the first inning.

The firework show continued in the sixth when Tyler Soderstrom, the Athletics' second-ranked prospect, hammered a go-ahead two-run homer to right-center on a full count. The 20-year-old notched back-to-back games with a homer with the blast.

The first-round (26th overall) selection in the 2020 Draft is swiftly adapting to the next level after being promoted to the RockHounds on Aug. 2. Soderstrom is slashing .272/.306/.500 with his new team after just over a month. -- Ethan Sands

Butler goes perfect at the plate with two homers (Sept. 10)
Angel numbers in baseball are possible when Lawrence Butler is playing. 

Oakland's No. 15 prospect was perfect at the plate, tallying four hits, four runs and four RBIs in High-A Lansing's 9-5 win over Dayton. 

The sixth-round (173rd overall) selection in the 2018 Draft began the evening with a single to right field in the first inning. He walked in his second plate appearance and followed with a two-run homer to left-center in the fourth. Butler notched his 19th double of the season on an RBI rope to right in the sixth. For his final act, the 22-year-old blasted a solo homer to right in the eighth for added insurance. 

The first baseman is slashing .270/.357/.468 with the Lugnuts. -- Ethan Sands

Four Lugnuts pitchers team up for no-no (Sep. 4)
The last time the High-A Lansing Lugnuts, then a Single-A affiliate, threw a no-hitter, they ultimately lost the game. It nearly happened again.

Despite combining for seven walks and allowing a run, four Lansing pitchers teamed up for the third no-hitter in franchise history, with the Athletics affiliate hanging on for a 2-1 win over South Bend.

Starter Jorge Juan worked the first four innings before giving way to left-hander Jack Owen, who threw 2 1/3 frames to earn the win. Shohei Tomioka walked three, but got the last two outs in the seventh. Osvaldo Berrios locked down his third save with three strikeouts over the final two innings.

The franchise's other no-hitters include Jordan Romano and Josh DeGraaf's six-inning feat in a 2-1 loss to Peoria on July 14, 2016 and a three-pitcher, nine-inning effort on April 21, 2003.

Yet, with the score 1-0 from the moment Lansing’s Lawrence Butler homered on the seventh pitch of the game until the top of the eighth, the team’s focus was strictly on navigating a close game. Full story »

Soderstrom falls double shy of cycle for Midland (Aug. 31)
After stumbling out of the gate a bit upon being promoted to Double-A, Tyler Soderstrom is starting to find his footing. The A’s second-ranked prospect notched his second three-hit effort in six games, cranking his third homer for Midland in the RockHounds’ 16-11 loss to Arkansas.

The 20-year-old laced a single to right in his first at-bat in the second inning before lifting off in the fourth with a towering solo shot to right-center off righty Bryce Miller. The lefty slugger didn’t record a hit again until the ninth inning, where he won a seven-pitch at-bat after being ahead in the count 3-0 with his fifth triple of the year -- second for Midland -- to plate two runs. He ended up finishing a double shy of the cycle.

MLB’s No. 50 overall prospect has picked it up over the past 10 games, hitting .333/.405/.472 with 17 total bases, four walks and eight RBIs in that span. -- Stephanie Sheehan

Waldichuk fans 7 consecutive batters for Las Vegas (Aug. 24)
Ken Waldichuk figured he'd take matters into his own hands -- literally -- for a few innings.

The No. 3 A's prospect struck out seven consecutive batters, whiffing the side in the second and third innings before sitting down the first batter in the fourth. Waldichuk finished with nine strikeouts and surrendered one run over five innings in Triple-A Las Vegas' 9-3 win over visiting Sugar Land. It marked his highest strikeout total since he fanned 11 on June 11 for Scranton/Wilkes-Barre.

Waldichuk, who was dealt from the Yankees in the Frankie Montas trade last month, has 137 strikeouts in 95 innings and a 2.84 ERA in 21 starts across three Minor League levels. -- Michael Avallone

Susac swats first homer in affiliate ball (Aug. 13)
Daniel Susac
showcased his power for the first time in affiliate ball.

The A’s first-round pick in the 2022 MLB Draft recorded his first hit in his second affiliate game. Susac showcased his power two games later, going 1-for-4 with one homer in Single-A Stockton’s 11-5 loss to San Jose.

The 21-year-old's power display came in his second at-bat with a two-run shot to left-center field in the third inning. The catcher’s power display brought his slash line to .217/.250/.391 on the season. -- Edwin Perez

Soderstrom proving he's Double-A ready (Aug. 7)
New level of baseball, same old Tyler Soderstrom.

The Athletics No. 2 prospect's slash line of .260/.323/.513 in High-A prompted his callup to Double-A. Soderstrom proved he was worthy of the promotion, going 3-for-5 with one double and two RBIs in Double-A Midland’s 6-5 win over Arkansas.

The 20-year-old’s productive game started early with a single and an RBI double in his first two at-bats. Soderstrom topped it off with an RBI infield single in the seventh inning.

The catcher’s productive day at the plate improved his slash line to .304/.292/.565 in his five games at the Double-A level. -- Edwin Perez